Everyone I’ve spoken to in the last week has remarked at what great weather we’ve been having. I’ve spent the last week travelling through Ontario on my motorcycle (up around Manitoulin Island, then north from there before returning home), and I lucked out with some of the best weather we’ve had all summer. Consistent sunny days without a cloud in the sky, and clear nights perfect for stargazing from Ontario’s north.
Along the way, I chatted with a bunch of other people (including other motorcyclists who, like me, couldn’t believe the weather we were getting at long last), and the consensus was that we’d all much rather be right where we were than down in Florida. The owner at a campsite I stayed at along the way mentioned how she’d been contacted about the timeshare she and her husband have in Florida – asking if they’d like to make any reservations. “Not right now.”
I also spent a couple nights with my grandma and her man-friend on the island, and while I was there, the TV was tuned mostly to CNN which had constant coverage of Hurricane Irma and the aftermath of all that destruction in different Florida communities. As snowbirds who travel down that way usually every year, they were obviously interested in keeping tabs on what was going on. Not only that, but they have plenty of friends who live down that way as well, so it was no surprise they kept the coverage on.
It’s one thing to watch news coverage with videos of uprooted trees, overturned cars, destroyed houses all in the aftermath, but it doesn’t really give you an idea of what it’s like to be trapped in an area DURING a hurricane.
And sure, there are plenty of videos of the hurricane passing through various areas that give you short glimpses of what the storm was like at its worst.
I found a pretty good video today put together by a gentleman who happened to be at Walt Disney’s Magical Kingdom as Hurricane Irma approached and battered Florida. It’s pretty interesting, and shows how serene the weather is both before and after the storm.
It’s worth nothing that Irma did not directly hit the Orlando area, where Walt Disney World and Magical Kingdom – though it was a near miss, and the area was still pounded by tropical storm-force winds. This video gives you a pretty good idea of what folks who likely had no alternative but to hunker down in the resort had to deal with. When you think about it, though, those large buildings are probably safer than the average house during a storm like that.
One of the things that jumped out at me was that there were very professional signs put up in various spots around the resort at different times, offering updates on the current conditions, and never failing to apologize for the weather – something that Disney absolutely can’t control. I guess it’s all about providing a good customer experience. They also managed to keep the power on while many other parts of the state had their power knocked out.
You know, if I had to be stuck anywhere where a hurricane was about to hit, I don’t think I’d hate being there.
If you enjoyed that video, there’s plenty more done in a similar style by Bright Sun Films, including a pretty interesting one on the rise and fall of the Pontiac Silverdome in Michigan, as well as what exactly happened when Target tried to expand into Canada. Good, informative videos.